Preparing for Economic Collapse

by | May 17, 2011 | Emergency Preparedness | 64 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    The following article is written by Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre and has been generously contributed by

    SHTF Plan Editor’s Note: We often put forth forecasts and theories of what the economy may look like months or years from now. In the past, we’ve identified numerous scenarios for how an economic collapse may play out – from a slowly deteriorating depressionary environment to a full-out rapidly descending hyperinflationary disaster. Mr. Aguirre outlines what he, his family and his neighbors experienced during the most recent Argentinian hyperinflation of 2001 and how he managed to get through it. Regardless of the specific circumstances of such an event, the recommendations put forth are similar to the many that we have made over the past several years. Preparedness is key, even if we don’t know exactly what to expect. Focus on the essentials first and remain flexible. The information provided below is a great starting point for creating your own SHTF Plan and will undoubtedly help you to survive and thrive as the world we have come to know changes before our eyes over coming months and years.

    Today’s contributor is Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre. Many of our readers have expressed interest in hearing accounts from those who have lived through economic collapse. FerFAL experienced the hyperinflationary destruction of Argentina’s economy in 2001 and continues to blog about his experiences and observations of its lingering aftermath. His websiteand his book Surviving the Economic Collapse offer windows into the probable outcomes to expect during a collapsing economy. Note: Our site’s What Should I Do? Guide offers specific guidance relevant to a number of the steps FerFAL recommends below.

    “How can I prepare for an economic collapse?” is one of the most common questions I get. It usually takes me a second to start to explain how complex such a question is. It’s like asking an auto mechanic, “Say, how do you build a car?” or asking a computer engineer, “What’s all that stuff inside my laptop?”

    I do have some first-hand experience in this matter, though. The economy in my country, Argentina, has gone through various crises, but none as large as when the economy collapsed in 2001 after a decade of apparent prosperity. The currency devaluated, and Argentina defaulted on its USD$132 billion debt, the largest default ever. The middle class took to the streets after bank accounts were frozen, and the president was forced to resign, escaping the presidential building in a helicopter.

    What I’ll do is, provide five quick foundational steps, based on what I know, for you to follow so as to be better prepared if something like what happened in my country ever happens in yours.

    Step #1: Secure a percentage of your savings in bullion.

    Five years ago, even the most paranoid person claimed you would never see “nationalized” banks in USA. The gung-ho survivalists claimed the entire country would go up in flames and open revolts would start before something as insane as a $700+ billion bailout to save the “too big to fail” rich elite was laid on the backs of the American working class. Yet here we are.

    When I try to explain this very important issue to my American friends, they tell me that banks would never steal people’s money because there are laws against that in the USA. Their money is insured. We had those same laws in Argentina, but still it happened. We had a constitutional right to private property. Yet the constitution mattered little during the collapse. Go right ahead — sue the government of the United States if something like that ever happens. Maybe you’ll get some of your savings back in a few years. If they feel like returning it.

    What people don’t understand is that laws are written by men, not some greater power. As soon as those running the show feel an emergency decree or law is in order, existing laws are simply rewritten. They may even be ignored all together! What do you do if something like that happens? You may complain, you may sue, but you’re not changing the cold hard fact that as of right now that bank door is closed, that ATM has no money in it, and you still have to survive. This is something Argentines have experienced and know very well. Hundreds of thousands of us have banged the doors of our banks, for years, without a penny being returned. You still sued, and waited, and spent the little money you had by hiring a lawyer. You lose, they win…unless you have some of that money at hand before they decide to steal it.

    Every single Argentine wishes he could go back in time, close his bank account, and put that money into gold. We would all do that if we had a time machine. Since you can’t guess the future, all you can do is estimate what can happen and play the odds in your favor. In the event of a full economic collapse, if you have 20% of your savings in physical gold and silver, that’s a percentage of your savings that is spared. It’s not an investment; don’t go crazy over gold and silver going up or down a few dollars, just be content that it’s not getting any lighter as it sits in your safe. If the economy collapses or even if there’s simply inflation (as there clearly will be), that percentage of your savings in precious metals is safe and will likely go up in price beyond its standard purchasing power as things get worse.

    During the first stages of a severe economic crisis, you will see ATMs running out of money fast, and many stores won’t be accepting credit cards. As the saying goes, “Cash is king” during those times. Your precious metal can be sold to a dealer, but you better keep that stored for now. When everyone is running around looking for an ATM with a few bucks in it, having a month’s worth of expenses in cash means you won’t be one of them. Why not more than a month´s worth of expenses? Because if the economy fully collapses, that paper money will lose its value within hours. It may drop 50%, 60%, or 75%, as happened in Argentina. Who knows? All you know is that as the currency loses value, the value of the precious metals you have stored goes up in proportion. Still, during those first days, a wad of cash gets you what you need.

    So, step one is acquiring precious metals (I generally recommend 20% of your savings but each person is a separate case) and a month’s worth of expenses in cash, kept safe at home.

    Step #2: Stock up on food.

    The more you have, the better. There may be periods of civil unrest like the ones we saw where stores are being looted and closed after that. There may be problems with resupply because of logistical complications. It’s better if you already have 6 to 12 months worth of food in your expanded pantry. Also, keep in mind the food you buy now will be considerably cheaper compared to post-inflation prices.

    This large supply of food will bring peace of mind in case of job loss, as well. Who knows how long it will be before you find another source of income? After the 2001 collapse, some people genuinely spent YEARS looking for a job without finding any. I can’t emphasize enough the peace of mind it brings knowing you still have some time, and that you can, in fact, put food on the table the following night.

    The food should be long-term storage type, requiring little or no cooking, at least for some of it. Water is also essential, so having a two-week supply is advised. The minimum amount is a gallon per person per day, and you should double that for flushing toilets and taking an elemental bath in case the water service is interrupted.

    Step #3: Acquire the essentials by putting together a survival/emergency kit.

    This will include your typical camping gear: a tent, sleeping bags, a stove (have enough fuel for it in case services are disrupted), first aid kit, medicines, LED flashlights and several spare batteries. Depending on how bad civil unrest gets, there may be problems with the infrastructure. After the economy collapsed in Argentina, the power company simply couldn’t afford the repairs needed, and it hadn’t planned for something like this, either. Rolling blackouts became common, and having LED lights and rechargeable batteries was a blessing. You could easily spend two or three days without power during summer. At one time, downtown Buenos Aires was left without power for five days. Imagine the complications this brings. If natural gas service is interrupted, you may need other ways of cooking. A camping stove and enough fuel will get you through it.

    Step #4: Improve your personal and home security.

    If you ask any Argentinean what concerns him the most, 9 out of 10 people will have the same answer: security. In second place is the economic situation. Ten years after the economic collapse, things are nothing like they used to be. Half of the middle class became poor, and its standard of living has decreased considerably. We’re still a high-risk economy, and it shows. Inflation is still rampant and can be anywhere from 5% to 10% per month, usually hitting the middle class the worst. But that’s something we’ve grown used to. That’s something we can live with.

    What concerns Argentineans the most is the crime problem, and the out-of-control violent crime we suffer is the major legacy of the 2001 economic collapse. Poverty sure didn’t help, nor did social segregation. But the greatest cause responsible for the crime levels we suffer is our own government. The liberal government that took control after the collapse considers criminals to be poor victims of brutal capitalism. The unofficial stance is that criminals have a right to steal, murder and rape – in their view, it’s how the “poor” get back at the rich and middle class who thrived during the 90’s. Of course, with a government like that, the crime problem just keeps getting worse.

    During the first days after the economy collapsed, civil unrest, rioting and looting was out of control. A state of siege and military law was declared, enforcing curfew hours after 10 pm. This lasted a few months, and for months after that, while order was recovered in the capitol district, there were still occasional revolts and looting. The sense of lawlessness extended way beyond the visible accounts depicted by the TV and general media. It’s during times like these that you realize you must have means of defending yourself and your family.

    My advice is to make your home as secure as possible against criminals that may take advantage of the lack of control during the worst of the rioting. After that, a better security plan for the entire family must be worked out. As things get worse, you understand that you can no longer afford to be lax about your personal and home security. Those that are quickly become vicitims. With a more secure home, you may want to consider having a weapon to defend yourself. Certainly not an easy decision, and one you must be extremely serious about. If you have the self-control and maturity to handle one, having a firearm and getting the minimum training to know how to use (it if it ever comes to that) is something you should consider doing.

    Crime and insecurity will be one of the greatest threats people all across USA will suffer, and very few will be ready for it. It won’t happen one dark gloomy night after watching the latest horror movie. It will happen in the Walmart parking lot at 3 pm, with plenty of people around (people who will hurry out of the way, pretending not to see anything). You’ll be thinking about what you just bought, that you maybe should have bought Lucky Charms instead of Corn Flakes. That’s when the nice-looking person with two other buddies, all well-dressed (with neat hair cuts, too), pulls a gun on you. Developing a sense of awareness will be the most important part, as well as making the rest of your family comprehend that times have changed and you can no longer be careless regarding security.

    Step #5: Embrace a different mindset.

    When Argentina went through its economic collapse, people handled it differently. Maybe the most common response was denial. The “I can’t believe this is happening “ attitude was pretty popular. Others complained, but you soon understood it changed nothing: It only made you feel more miserable, more stressed, and that was something you could do without. Others just ended their misery. Suicide rates doubled after the collapse, with people sometimes jumping under the train at early rush hour in a desperate attempt to make their misery noticed by others.

    What you need to do is become more positive, more active. Be someone who, while accepting those things you can’t change, does something about the things you can. Get involved now, do what I just recommended right now, it will bring you peace of mind. Remember to stay positive and put every problem into perspective. Complain less. You’ll have enough to complain about when inflation gets worse. Soon you’ll understand that material things can be replaced, and you become more grateful for what you have instead of worrying about what you don’t.

    It’s essential to keep a positive attitude. Being someone that gets easily depressed will be the end of you as the economy worsens. Problems much worse that what you are used to will be a daily occurrence. You’ll just have to roll with it and learn to cope with the new world you live in. Reinforce your relationships with people. Fight stress by finding a hobby you enjoy, hopefully one that has a practical side as well. After the collapse, lots of people started their own businesses when they realized there were no jobs to be found. It would be better if you get started now, just in case you ever need it in order to earn a living.

    These are my recommendations. I know many people could have used such advice back when our economy collapsed.

    Some common questions regarding hyperinflation

    How quickly does it happen?

    These events occur fast, but there are warning signs: lack of investment; higher interest rates; unemployment. When banks start coming up with excuses so as to not give you your money right away when closing an account, that’s usually not a good sign.

    As for inflation and hyperinflation, they happen right in front of your eyes. It actually happened to me that the price of an item I picked in a store almost doubled in price by the time I reached the cash register. The employee just placed the sticker with the new price over the old one (no time to remove them) Employees rushed around changing prices several times a day, all day long during the ongoing crisis. It was fun to peel back the stack of stickers with the different prices and see how they had gone up in a matter of hours. Rioting happens fast, too. Once the banks close rioting is just minutes away.

    What happens to your savings/investments?

    I didn’t have much but managed to close my account just a day before the banks closed their doors. My parents are accountants and saw the signs mentioned earlier. When we went to the bank a nice lady told us they didn’t have USD$1,000 in the bank. Our jaws just dropped. That same day we went to the main branch and closed the account my sister and I had. The next day all banks closed, the accounts where frozen.

    As for real estate, that was a pretty safe investment. Eventually rents went up so as to compensate for the devaluation. Of course you were much better of with your money in bricks and mortar than in a bank account.

    How does the populace react?

    Violently, as you’d expect when your life savings are stolen from you.

    What is the government saying/doing?

    Laws were changed to make everything nice and legal. The excuses the then-president Fernando De La Rua came up with in his speeches during the crisis just made everything worse.

    Just days before the bank holidays they promised none of that would happen. Same thing before the devaluation. They swore on their mothers’s names they wouldn’t do such a thing, then did it the following day. Politicians tend to do such things, and they are all similar worldwide.

    What happens to the capital markets?

    The stock market dropped like a rock, then shut down. What surprised you the most was how everything was simply frozen in expectation. No one wanted to spend a single cent, not even to buy half a gallon of paint for a work site because you just didn’t know what would happen in a matter of hours, let alone next week. The biggest investors had sold and left the country months before everything went down. Another sign to look for.

    Does violence and crime become an immediate concern?

    Yes it does. While stores were the more common targets, houses were looted, too. The best thing to do was stay home, have a defendable position and be armed. I had looters not 20 yards away from my home. What do you do if they rush your home? Can you just open fire on them? What will they do when/if you do? All these things flash into your mind.

    A significant amount of people behave because they believe there’s a punishment if they do otherwise. Once that fear is removed because the authorities have clearly lost control, you see the worst of people’s nature. It’s not a pleasant thought, but it’s better to be ready.

    Take care,

    Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre.

    This What Should I Do? blog series is intended to surface knowledge and perspective useful to preparing for a future defined by Peak Oil.  The content is written by readers and is based in their own experiences in putting into practice many of the ideas exchanged on this site.  If there are topics you’d like to see featured here, or if you have interest in contributing a post in a relevant area of your expertise, please indicate so in our What Should I Do? series feedback forum.


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      1. Picture looks like a target rich environment before your home is set on fire.

      2. You can see this already happening.  The US Government is tapping into workers pension funds in order to increase the federal debt ceiling in order to pay for wars and etc.  Very bad sign indeed.  Where is .gov gonna get the money to pay back the pension funds?  It won’t!  What .gov WILL do is print more fiat money and spend more money it does not have.
        Expect Argentina-like out of control government.  It has started.

      3. BJ,
        Just turned on my p.c. and start reading both Mac’s and yours. Thanks for your time. I will comment more as soon as i read them.
        I hope that you will NOT read survival advices from your Greek friend in some months. 🙂
        Stay safe.

      4. Those who have nothing for them steal will be left alone.  Take everything off the “corporate grid” NOW.
        At least then you will only need to protect yourself from the pissed off people who had their life savings stolen.

      5. Oil continues to fall, yet the price at the pump here in Michigan is still far above the $4 mark…..that really ticks me off. I known thew dollar is lower than it was in 08 but c’mon and still it hasn’t dropped but a few cents at the pump since it was up to $1145 aND TODAY IT IS DOWN TO $96
        BTW….silver keeps dropping…yeah  🙂  That means hopefully I can buy more in the near future if all things work out and I find work

      6. I witnessed first-hand what FerFal was talking about.  I’m a U.S. citizen, but lived in Buenos Aires for a few years, arriving only 2 weeks before the Argentine economy bottomed out.  I still have the pictures of the looting and rioting that took place only 30 yards from my apartment.  I never thought, then, that I would relive those times here in the U.S..  Get ready! 

      7. An economic collapse in America would be like nothing the world has ever seen.
        #1 we have 250 million more people with many already out of work, hungry and POed.
        #2 we have millions more living on the government teat in one fashion or the other depending on the ck every month .
        #3 our politicians have already drove most of the jobs overseas except fastfood and medical so it would be decades before our work force got started again.
        #4 All the family farms that used to feed the world are gone
        #5 over 50% are in debt over their heads.
        #6 70% probably have guns, maybe 80% counting the illegal ones.
        #7 we have many different races and religions and when things get real bad, they seem to blame each other instead of the people who put us in this position.
         #8#* there are no more Americas to come to our aid, so get ready for some real hard times
        #9I could go on for for 20 more numbersm but you get the idea.

      8. Wondered if I should pay ALL of my debts (credit cards, car payments, etc.) before the collapse of USA or pay little by little and let them crash and that would save our money?

        • I would pay them off and quit feeding the gangster banksters by stopping using them. I bet that the banks will be empowered to imprison you to get any money you owe them if the collapse happens. Remember, the banks/Federal reserve are the ones causing this problem. The Federal reserve is just a bank. They name “Federal” in the title means nothing. They could be called the Lolipop bank but then people would understand they are just a bank tasked with handling the US currency.

      9. Comments….. I would recommend learning how to grow your own food supply with hierloom seeds and rain harvesting. Stocking up is good but you also need a perpetual food and water supply. Having an urban chicken coop will help with eggs and fertilizer. Much prayer and learning to live without will be big too.

      10. Thanks for sharing Mr Aguirre. Buckle up all and keep watching for the signs.  Gulp…. I think I have seen some of the signs allready.

      11. BJ:  Refineries are being shut down because of the floods.  Backlog of supply.  Japan, Libya, Obomama & the USDX.  Fly at FL350 and see the big picture.

      12. No nonsense in this comment, I promise. Just a question or two. Soros has been dumping most of his PM holdings in the last 2 or 3 months. Maybe a bit longer than that, I don’t know. Reuters has another story on it today. He may have sold all his ‘paper’ related to metals, as well as mining stocks and such, but what do you bet he has a considerable stash of physical somewhere? This smells bad. Soros may be evil but he’s not stupid. When a super-rich goon deliberately tries to drive the price of something down, my reaction is there’s probably a good reason to buy into it. (if we could afford to) Could it be that the PTB want to depress PMs percieved value in the minds of the masses, so that when a world wide econ crash happens those of us who have a bit of PMs will trade them for less value in food, fuel or whatever? Meaning we’ll sell them cheap during and immediately after the crash and then the rich goons can reconsolidate possession of them, and everything else, at a bargain? Is it even possible for them to do this (crash the price and then repurchase cheaply) when PM ownership is so widespread? There’s probably a lot more to this than I’m seeing. Somebody help me out. thanks        okie

        • Soros owns 11 tons of physical gold! 11 tons! That means you could be very right in your theory. Soros stated he was selling gold because “i think the threat of DEFLATION is over”. DEFLATION. So that means when PMs go down he can buy them back b/c of the threat of INFLATION. I’m a buyer when it goes down. If this type of collapse happens, sell when you have to… keep some though so you have some net worth when things finaly stabalize.

      13. Okie, I think most people will shet their pull-up scoobie doobie huggies & sell @ 50 while it goes vertical to 100.  50 is sound barrier.  There was a demon that lived in the air. They said whoever challenged him would die. Their controls would freeze up, their planes would buffet wildly, and they would disintegrate. The demon lived at Mach 1 on the meter, seven hundred and fifty miles an hour, where the air could no longer move out of the way. He lived behind a barrier through which they said no man could ever pass. They called it the sound barrier.

      14. Comments…..  Most of the people who read these blogs are already preppers. The above story serves as a real world example of what is to come here soon. everyone needs to keep on with their preps to the end. on the subject of PM’s.  With silver, I just remind myself of the fundamentals that I know are truthfull.  Increased demand, and shorter supply.  That fact won’t change, no matter how much paper manipulation goes on.
             Stay with your plan, and don’t get distracted with all the news ‘fluff’ that’s out there. Our time is coming that we will use what we have prepared for.

      15. smokinokie.  It does seem puzzling.  Here’s a few possibilities.

        Perhaps Soros sold everything at once to make the market decline so he can buy back stuff cheap & make a bundle.

        Perhaps he knows that the economy is about to crash & he’s trying to make us all panic & sell our gold & silver so we feel the pain even worse.  I feel 100% sure he has a huge physical holding.  Probably on a well set up private island somewhere.

        Interesting to note.  Soros sold $800 million but Paulson still owns $4.4 billion in pm’s. 

        I don’t think we need to panic over this.  Just carry on and ignore the economic terrorist.  He’ll feel the eternal “heat” of his “harm to others” evil actions on earth one day when his number comes up.  Just desserts.

      16. SmokinOkie said, “… Soros has been…” blah blah blah, (no offense) People like Soros remind me of Loki

        So I’m guessing that makes Jim Rogers and Marc Faber out to be “Thors”… and what Are they saying in contrast to Soros?
        But even then, even Jim Rogers said there may come a time/right conditions where he would sell too.
        Myself, I like Marc Faber’s comment of, basically, “I will Never sell my gold.” – freaking Moxie ~ eh?

        Just a thought, who knows, chaos reigns.

        The only thing I can think to add is, the result in Argentina seems to be an example of when the bad guys are left in power, hmm, a lot of People say that’s what’s happening here now too so perhaps we can expect more of the same(?),… i.e. “You’ll get nothing. And like it!”

        Emily Skarbek Is Interviewed on the Government Cost Calculator on Reason TV:

        “…the Government Cost Calculator,… helps you determine how much a person will pay for various federal programs now and over the course of a lifetime. Second, it compares those tax payments to the forgone earnings that would have been possible if such funds were kept and invested in private market accounts…”

        Ceteris Paribus not included.


      18. GA Mom: I’m fairly sure Paulson is one of “them”, and Soros is not. First clue is Glen Beck’s perpetual bashing of Soros- he wouldn’t do that to one of the Elites, not while working for Fox (an Elite-owned media conglomerate), anyway…

        So Paulson has access to the “free money” at the Fed’s printing presses; it doesn’t matter what he owns in stocks, PM’s, paper, etc…, he’s part of the cabal that owns the New World Order, and that’s something that money alone can’t buy.

        Soros made his money in the currency markets, and didn’t come from “old money” or “old banking”, so I don’t think he’s actually part of the clan. The Elite just put up with him, for the time being. Maybe feed him disinfo, since he likes to talk. And yes, he sold PAPER holdings, not his stash of actual metal. In fact, from what I just read earlier, he sold off the paper to buy MORE physical… 

        The big “terrorist” false flag event is coming soon, they can’t hold it together too much longer…

      19. GA Mom and clark- thanks for the links.
        The prez is giving a speech tomorrow about our new direction in the middle east. I can hardly wait. There’s bound to be some hope and loose change in it somewhere. Remember this when you watch it: when he says “my fellow Americans…” he’s just told the first lie. It’ll probably go downhill from there.
        Meanwhile Texas is burning, Louisiana is treading water, the economy swirls faster around the bottom of the toilet, and the rest of the country is fascinated with dancing celebrities. WHERE IS THE LEADERSHIP IN THIS COUNTRY? Is there no one who can reach the masses and motivate them out of their stupor? Anybody with the guts and the intelligence to lead? I am just about to get fed up with this. Watching this congress(dims and pubs) and this administration is surreal. And not in a Pink Floyd good surreal kind of way. Modern amerika has become like some kind of journey. A journey of sight and sound and immagination…next stop, the twilight zone.

      20. Comments…..”Its not an investment, don’t go crazy over gold and silver going up or down a few dollars. Just be content that its not getting any lighter as it sits in your safe”…… sound words from ferfal. I wish you all well.

      21. Have Bar B Que sauce will Travel! By week 3 there will be plenty of “long pork” to roast in the fire pit!

        yum yum suckling piglet…

      22. If anything happens to me, insure you say these exact words backwards in chinese, “Klaaatu barada nikto” to Gort so he can transport turbo tim tax man to china.  If you forget these words ask Mary Ann.  

      23. Dear Queen mum,  It’s about time you visit us Irish trash before we implode across the chunnel to keep you in a new green dress.  Italy is next.  I’m blind & deaf.

      24. I don’t know what happen to my post???  I’ll try again.

        Thanks all for sharing your thoughts, good stuff.

        “After the collapse, lots of people started their own businesses when they realized there were no jobs to be found. It would be better if you get started now, just in case you ever need it in order to earn a living”  It’s what I’ve been touting! … New survey shows around 54% of college grads over the past 4 years don’t have full-time jobs. Folks, it’s not getting any better.
        Our currency is collapsing and anyone paying attention knows it. Soro’s is selling worthless paper to get physical. He manipulates markets… Sell the paper, drive down prices, and get into real money on the cheap. I hope you do the same!

      25. Right now an ounce of gold buys 380 1 kilo loaves of bread.
        If you come by my farm after crash I doubt I would take an once of gold for a loaf of bread.
        Remember preppers if you cant eat it, shoot it, build with it or Fornicate it!
        It really is just Fiat


      26. HIGH SCHOOL — 1957  vs. 2010

        Scenario 1:  
        Jack goes quail hunting before school and then pulls into the school parking
        lot with his shotgun in his truck’s gun rack..
        1957 – Vice Principal comes over, looks at Jack’s shotgun, goes to his car
        and gets his shotgun to show Jack.
        2010 – School goes into lock down, FBI called, Jack hauled off to jail and
        never sees his truck or gun again. Counselors  called in for traumatized
        students and teachers.    

        Scenario 2:  
        Johnny and Mark get into a fist fight after school.
        1957 – Crowd gathers. Mark wins. Johnny and Mark shake hands  and end up
        2010 – Police called and SWAT team arrives — they arrest both Johnny and
        Mark.  They are both charged with assault and both expelled even though
        Johnny started it.

        Scenario  3:  
        Jeffrey will not be still in class, he disrupts other students.
        1957 – Jeffrey sent to the Principal’s office and given a good paddling by
        the Principal.  He then returns to class, sits still and does not disrupt
        class again.                 
        2010 – Jeffrey is given huge doses of Ritalin.  He becomes a zombie. He is
        then tested for ADD. The family gets extra money (SSI) from the government
        because Jeffrey has a disability.  

        Scenario  4:  
        Billy breaks a window in his neighbor’s car and his Dad gives him a whipping
        with his belt.                 
        1957 – Billy is more careful next time, grows up normal, goes to college and
        becomes a successful businessman..  
        2010 – Billy’s dad is arrested for child abuse, Billy is removed to foster
        care and joins a gang. The state psychologist is told by Billy’s sister that
        she remembers being abused herself and their dad goes to prison. Billy’s mom
        has an affair with the psychologist.   

        Scenario 5:  
        Mark gets a headache and takes some aspirin to school.
        1957 – Mark shares his aspirin with the Principal out on the smoking dock..
        2010 – The police are called and Mark is expelled from school for drug
        violations. His car is then searched for drugs and weapons.

        Scenario 6:  
        Pedro fails high school English.
        1957 – Pedro goes to summer school, passes English and goes to college.
        2010 – Pedro’s cause is taken up by state.  Newspaper articles appear
        nationally explaining that teaching English as a  requirement for graduation
        is racist.  ACLU files class action lawsuit against the state school system
        and Pedro’s English teacher.  English is then banned from core curriculum..
        Pedro is given his diploma anyway but ends up mowing lawns for a  living
        because he cannot speak English.                   

        Scenario 7:  
        Johnny takes apart leftover firecrackers from the Fourth of July, puts them
        in a model airplane paint bottle and blows up a red ant  bed.  
        1957 – Ants die.
        2010 – ATF, Homeland Security and the FBI are all called. Johnny is charged
        with domestic terrorism.  The FBI investigates his parents – and all
        siblings are removed from their home and all computers are confiscated.
        Johnny’s dad is placed on a terror watch list and is never allowed to fly

        Scenario 8:  
        Johnny falls while running during recess and scrapes his knee.  He is found
        crying by his teacher, Mary. Mary hugs him to comfort him.  
        1957  – In a short time, Johnny feels better and goes on playing.

        2010 – Mary is accused of being a sexual predator and loses her job. She
        faces 3 years in State Prison. Johnny undergoes 5 years of therapy.   

        This is how stupid we have become! 

        P.S.  My wife is a middle school teacher and just this week was suspended for one day without pay for sending a disruptive student out in the hall…..WTF!!!!

        • Beautiful illustrations on how out of whack America has gotten.

          • Heres a quick out of whack illustration, look who sits in the White House.

        • Awesome analysis of how our country has changed. Can I steal it and mention your name (nickname)to give you credit? I know a lot of preppers that would enjoy this.

      27. Bloodyfellows, Love your comments, that’s where so many of our problems come from, you better bet that if my kiddo needs a paddling, he gets one, then he goes and apologizes to who ever he disrespected. But then again, my kids know better then to be disrespectful because when they were little they were taught. I live in nowhere Alaska and my kids teacher hugs her and the school knows to call me if my kids are out of line and they won’t do it again. Thank goodness we are years behind the rest of the country.

      28. If you come by my farm before the crash I doubt I would take 380 1 kilo loaves of bread for an ounce of gold.

        Tuco: [trying to read a note] “See you soon, id…” “id…” “ids…”
        Blondie: [taking the note] “Idiots”. It’s for you.

      29. Bloodyfellow…dead on..or spot on..what a mess we have allowed..slow but surely creeping along silently under the radar, until BOOM..its in your face and concitered the norm..

        this shit thats going on with the cops invading homes is how you put a stop to it…all the local tax payers get up all together and say “fuck this” want to do this shit and get sued?..your no longer funded with all of our tax dollars, law officials courts and cops want to do this shit…its going to be on your dam dime!

        because the only reason why they are doing this is because they are funded by the citizens and its our own money being used to violate ourselfs and our rights, if that money tree died, they wouldnt even be thinking about doing this.

        Its a whole different ball game when its their money being spent of law suits and lawyers

      30. The economy here in the U.S. will not collapse anytime soon. If in the future the collapse occurs, it will be from God’s intervention through major natural disasters, not from human error. This is why the Fed and Wall Street exist for the mere sake of keeping this system flowing and operating. I honestly have no idea how bad things are throughout the U.S. From what I can see here in the New York City area and its affluent nearby suburbs, things appear to be unaffected by this current recession/depression. People still drive around in gas guzzling SUV’s and sport cars, shop for clothes every weekend and eat out on a daily basis. I could be wrong but it just seems as if NYC is invulnerable to these tough times and such.

      31. “After the collapse, lots of people started their own businesses when they realized there were no jobs to be found. It would be better if you get started now, just in case you ever need it in order to earn a living.”

        Here is the crux of the matter. Commerce will NEVER end until nobody is left on starship Earth. Start a business that will be in demand. Even something as simple as a rickshaw can provide a needed service after the SHTF. How about tool sharpening service? For the more militaristic, there is ammo reloading. Everyone should grow a garden and if you have the room, potatoes and grain. The list is endless, however I’ve found the sheeple have an endless litany of excuses to avoid starting a business.

        Afterwards, the haves will still have the problem of the have-nots. Hence the reason for security. In 1800’s western north america, it was the businesses that hired the sherrif; not the people. Who do you think will be hiring and for what purpose once the mess settles down?

        In this area of Alaska, once the gov’t tit goes dry, the few who will be left will have no choice but to cooperate in commerce. We are almost completely dependant upon imports; both to the state and the local economy. With estimates of Alaska only growing enough to feed itself for 30 days, even KTUU TV out of Anchorage has been running segments on the loss of ag land to developers.

        Never underestimate the sin commodities: alcohol and tobacco especially. You don’t need a still when it’s freezing outside and tobacco grows in a greenhouse even in Alaska. I know cause I’m growing it from seed I harvested last fall. Did you know paper is easy to make? Add a bit of talcum powder and you have toilet paper.

        Start your business now while money still works and the sheep are eager to spend. Buy books on low tech trades and crafts. Build your skill-set NOW! If you don’t, your PMs will be transfered to those who did and you’ll be forced to join the sheep.

        Here are two booksellers I deal with. No, get your own link.Learn to
        Lindsay Publications
        Edward R Hamilton

      32. Oops, I let the cursor get away and posted too fast.

        Learn to do your own research.

      33. Bloodyfellow, your remarks take me back to when I was a kid.  Nowadays, these kids scream and cry and try to commit suicide if they don’t have the very latest version of the iPhone.  When I was a kid, we were lucky to have a book of matches and gallon of gas to play with!  Those were the days! 🙂


        May 18th, 2011 at 11:25 am
        Bloodyfellows, Love your comments, that’s where so many of our problems come from, you better bet that if my kiddo needs a paddling, he gets one, then he goes and apologizes to who ever he disrespected. But then again, my kids know better then to be disrespectful because when they were little they were taught. I live in nowhere Alaska and my kids teacher hugs her and the school knows to call me if my kids are out of line and they won’t do it again. Thank goodness we are years behind the rest of the country

        Same here in Ky….we even say Happy Birthday, Jesus on the radio at Christmas!!!Gasp!!!
        And at Easter, He Is Risen!!! Double Gasp!!
        Hell, at the elementary school next to me, they have morning Bible study!!!  Triple Gasp!!!
        I guess we’re too little and redneck to make a difference to ACLU, huh??


        May 18th, 2011 at 12:08 pm

        Maybe that is the element of this nation that has an average of  (and uses) 10 credit cards????

      36. Bet it was high test (leaded) & wooden matches.  Charcoal lighter fluid was good stuff then & didn’t come with a caution label.

      37. It was “regular”.  That’s all we ever bought, and yes, it was leaded.  Come to think of it, back then, we had Hoppe’s #9 NitroSolvent too, not this new crap they try to foist off on us.  That old stuff with the nitro-benzene in it really gets them gun barrels clean baby.  Can’t find it anymore though.

      38. Jonny V- when I was a kid regular gas was 95 octane, super was 105! Any kid in town could take an empty jug(of any kind) to the station and get a gallon. Mostly we put it in lawnmowers or mini-bikes (remember those!?) but sometimes we did torch an anthill just for fun. Ahhh, the good old days!

      39. Yeah, then in 1973 the arabs embargoed us and gas shot up to 73¢ a gallon, and you could only get it on odd or even days, according to the last number on your car license plate.  Man, my dad was pissed when he saw us lighting some stuff up in the back yard…..Here he was, waiting for an hour or two and fighting with the other a-holes in line, and we were burning junk with it.  Jesus Christ we got our asses whipped….:)

      40. I got 140 octane at the airport I worked @ (purple).  The advance before TDC was amazing in the 4 bolt main!  Hoppe’s #9 and greese out of the tube is all I use to keep the blue & ss clean.

      41. Jonny V – Those were the days.  I grew up in Missouri.  The
        Boy Scouts sold fireworks before the 4th so they could go camping.  My pop use to give me 10 bucks.  I could buy bags of excitement.   Firecrackers by the thousands.  M80’s, cherry bombs.  Imagine getting busted today with a hand full of M80’s and a light punk…….   That was a blast.  Good times.  I never blew up anyone and never lost a finger.  Hell we didn’t know what eye protection was.  Bottle rockets all day long…….

      42. you guys are bringing back memories

      43. You’re right, you are wrong DigiRonin.

      44. The proper survival mindset will get you further than the next door neighbor who stocks a bunch of cans and has a rusty shotgun waiting to go “Ted Nugent” on trespassers. Use smarts, my friends!

      45. Hedge Farm! The Doomsday Food Price Scenario Turning Hedgies into Survivalists

        By Foster Kamer
        May 17, 2011 | 8:16 p.m

        On the rare occasion that New Yorkers talk about farming, it’s usually something along the lines of what sort of organic kale to plant in the vanity garden at the second house in the Adirondacks. But on a recent afternoon, The Observer had a conversation of a different sort about agricultural pursuits with a hedge fund manager he’d met at one of the many dark-paneled private clubs in midtown a few weeks prior. “A friend of mine is actually the largest owner of agricultural land in Uruguay,” said the hedge fund manager. “He’s a year older than I am. We’re somewhere [around] the 15th-largest farmers in America right now.”

        “We,” as in, his hedge fund.

        It may seem a little odd that in 2011 anyone’s thinking of putting money into assets that would have seemed attractive in 1911, but there’s something in the air-namely, fear. The hedge fund manager and others like him envision a doomsday scenario catalyzed by a weak dollar, higher-than-you-think inflation and an uncertain political climate here and abroad.

        The pattern began to emerge sometime in 2008. …


      46. Good advice on prepping. Having lived through a similar crisis I can vouch for all the bad things that happen. Women tend to be the worst for denial (women are very law-abiding by nature and make good office workers). They will deny things will get bad up until they do get bad.
        On the plus side, women are very adaptable and soon become resigned to the new conditions. They turn to income-generating activities to survive and feed the kids. See a rapid rise in the sex industry post-collapse.
        Hedge and spread: make sure you have lots and lots of options for many scenarios. It is hard to predict how things unfold, so it is important to have back-up plans and flexibility so you can move to the next option if the first falls apart. Don’t trust normality to hold: if money stops flowing or the police lose control, then all bets are off.
        The people in heavy debt right now are already lost to the situation I am afraid. Right up until the crisis, they will be living a life of being harrassed by debt collection agencies etc. Rather than prepping, they will just be trying to survive.
        You want to be solvent, flexible, adaptable, mobile, healthy, alert and positive. Do this, and you will get through it and even thrive.

      47. Ok people get back to reality. Nothing wrong with a little preparation but look at all the effort being put into little old Greece. If the USA goes down the world has already gone down. Japan will be Next, Spain, Portugal. If France and England go then get the preparation up a bit and get nervous. Lot’s more time than you think, the USA drives the world. China will in 20 years plus but there is lots of time before a crash and lots of time to avoid it.

        Eveyone wakes up each day in this economy with skills that others need. The US is an economic machine. Politicians will get in line, Look at Bill Clinton right now, has some great ideas. We will fix this, there will be pain and a lower standard of living for a while but not Arentina or Zimbabwe people, get a grip. Get out of debt and save cash as this country will be great again and you want to invest in that.

      48. Everyone needs to get this correct… (REPOST ON TWITTER, FACEBOOK)

        America is controlled by the 3 privately owned states (district of columbia, the city of london, and the vatican.) Each has it’s own flag, pays no taxes and has it’s own laws. All 3 are part of an interlocking “ONE” called “City Of The Empire” Or “Black Sun”.

        When you pay taxes it goes to The Bank Of London and straight to the vatican. These 3 privately owned tiny nation states are owned by 13 families that rule the entire planet militarily, financially, and spiritually. Without a doubt. OPEN YOUR EYES AND YOU WILL SEE IT.

        They control the markets, the religions, the media, and they rob you of your wealth. Wake up. Time to wake everyone up. Nothing will change until the people SEE the TRUTH about their miserable extistence that has been dictated to them by these CREEPS

      49. It takes money money to prepare yourself for what’s ahead even though it will be useless in the near future. That’s right get it from the sheep now and use it to build something to sustain yourself and for trade.
        On Wednesday, it was the World Bank itself that issued a very chilling warning. In an absolutely startling report, the World Bank revised GDP growth estimates for 2012 downward very sharply, warned that Europe could be on the verge of a devastating financial crisis, and declared that the rest of the world better “prepare for the worst. Visit my fb page and I’ll share a video I made that will show you a fast and free way to bleed the sheep.


        If looters were roving about through the neighborhood, which I doubt would happen, I would be very careful not to be observed. Yes, I would be armed and would not fire unless an attack was immenent. You want to have the element of surprise.

        Pick out the likely ringleaders and make sure when you shoot one of them the blood and gore are as ugly as possible. That way you freak out the rest of them and maybe, if you are lucky, they will run the other way for awhile. You better get away at that point in case they come back with twice as many looters to lynch you alive. Be warned, if you shoot, you better have an escape route already planned.

      51. With all the trouble going on in Europe with the Euro and the financial crises. I find it a little scary that one of the largest banks in Italy has frozen all their customers accounts. People are stuck over their with no way to get their money. I have been looking for a place to get some food to store just in case that ever happened here. I have tried several samples from different providers and all of the stuff I tried sucked. I did find a company called Go Foods and their stuff is actually pretty good. If anyone is interested in being prepared if something does happen here the link is below. I also put some links of the crap that is happening in Europe.

      52. Pleasant Hill Grains ( – Free Fedex shipping for orders>$99) has a wide selection of freeze dried fruits, vegetables, meats, canned butter & cheese, gravity water filters, non-hybrid seeds, and buckets of grains stored in nitrogen atmosphere mylar bags. Also cooking supplies, pressure cookers, grain mills, etc.

        ditto (free shipping for orders over $99.)

        I’ve found a number of camping items (emergency prep) lamps, sleeping bags, on eBay and Cheaper than Dirt.

        Rescue Essentials ( for medical supplies and first aid kits, professional emt & paramedic supplies. Also Try veterinary suppliers. In CA I used to buy all our antibiotics for the animals at a local feedstore, no prescriptions. Might still be possible where YOU live.

        Get emergency response training from RED CROSS, Local Fire Department / Rescue Squad. Get yourself trained for Wilderness emergency response if you can find a course. You definitely want to get training based on being at least DAYS away from a hospital or doctor.

        Good Book: Where there is no Doctor

        Recognize & treat lacerations, fractures, dislocations, hypothermia, heat stroke, frostbite, diabetic coma, extreme low blood sugar, fevers and such. Learn assessment, ABC (airway Breathing, circulation) Learn CPR for adults, children and INFANTS. Learn to dress wounds with bandages that don’t unravel. ASSEMBLE SOME GOOD 1st Aid kits.

      53. With fewer jobs and less job security, less and less people can obtain mortgages. Living costs are constantly increasing, and it seems that our politicians haven’t a clue how to deal with the many problems arising from the economic crisis. Maybe they need to turn to professional economic crisis specialists. For example, the Orlando Bisegna Index, specialists in the economic crisis, apart from measuring the intensity of the economic crisis in many countries, have helped various counties with debt problems, business failures and unemployment, thus improving the economic condition of many families.

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